It was a week later than anticipated, but the 2018-19 indoor season kicked off this past weekend with no less than 17 victories as the majority of athletes took to the track in New York state.
The lion’s share of athletes made their way down the Highway 416 and across the bridge to St. Lawrence University in Canton, where Lions, Gee Gees and Ravens combined for 16 gold medal performances. This medal haul included sweeping men’s and women’s titles in the 60, 600, 1000, and 3000 metres as well as the 4×400 metre relay and pole vault.
Veteran Lionel Muteba cruised to victory in the men’s 60 metre event, winning in an impressive 6.92 seconds. The time surpassed the seven year old meet record of 6.99 seconds and was also a comfortable 14 hundreths ahead of his nearest competitor.
The women’s sprint title was capture by University of Ottawa student, Pernille Lund. The Norwegian exchange student equaled her lifetime best of 7.84 seconds in her first outing of the season.
Defending USports silver medalist at 600 metres, Stephen Evans stepped up in distance to open his season,taking the 1000 metre title. The Political Science student’s winning time of 2:29.55 was the second best of his career as he finished almost a full four seconds clear of fellow Lion Remy Binns.
Evans’ female counterpart, Holly Hicks was also dominating, completing her five lap run to victory in 3:04.50 – a full 7.5 seconds clear of St. Lawrence’s Leah Livernois.
It was a great start to the season for the pole vaulters, as they captured both the men’s and women’s titles. The University of Ottawa’s Claudine Nafaa set a new lifetime best of 3.20 metres to take victory over Plattsburgh’s Anike Roberts. Nafaa’s previous best of 3.10 metres was set this past summer. Meanwhile Jesus Bustillos came as close as possible to a lifetime best as his winning leap of 3.80 metres fell one centimetre short of his personal standard.
Also in New York, former Carleton Raven Telvin Tavernier captured the heptathlon title at the SUNY Brockport Green and Gold Invite. The 25 year old Tavernier claimed victory in the long jump, shot put and pole vault en route to his victory. His 5043 points were the third highest total of his career and 127 more than his nearest competitor.
In Massachusetts, Canadian Junior record holder Sharelle Samuel opened up her season with a fifth place finish at the BU Season Opener in Boston. The Harvard freshman clocked in at 39.49 seconds for 300 metres – the second fastest time in her young career.
Other winners from St. Lawrence included:
Mary Ollier – 1:40.22 (600m)
Zachary Meredith – 1:26.16 (600m)
Tyler Dacosta – 9.05 (60m Hurdles)
Bertwin Ben-Smith – 36.34 (300m)
Rebecca Brennan – 10:38.72 (3000m)
Nic Roberts – 9:01.34 (3000m)
Christina Hertner – 12.36m (Shot Put)
Rinila Haridas – 4.74m (Long Jump)
Ashley Nearing, Lindsay MacMillan, Pippa Kolking, Kierah Barton – 1:55.63 (4x200m)
Madison Clarke, Mary Ollier, Robyn Davis, Stephanie Leask – 4:11.64 (4x400m)
Tyler Dacosta, Stephen Evans, Alex Small, Jesse Fortier – 3:38.14 (4x400m)